What was that sound? And where did it come from?

The sense of hearing provides us effortless and accurate responses to these questions almost instantaneously, and around the clock – even, to some extent, when we are asleep. Incredible! But hearing impairment, hearing devices, and the listening environment itself can all compromise our ability to sense both what and where sounds are.

In the Spatial Hearing Lab at the University of Washington…

We combine acoustic, perceptual, and electrophysiological measurements to identify elements of audio/auditory signals and systems that influence our ability to locate and separate sources of sound. Several ongoing basic and applied research studies are designed to identify factors that underlie – and constrain – spatial hearing.

Identifying constraints on spatial hearing – and, toward this end, better understanding how spatial hearing happens when the auditory system is functioning as it should – will yield to targets for modified, improved, and new hearing devices and technology.

Please take a look around to learn more about who we are, what we do, and where we’re going. If you’ve still got questions, would like to get involved, or support our science, we would love to hear from you!